Step 3. In a small bowl, mix the food colouring, cocoa powder and vanilla extract until it makes a thick paste.
Step 4. Add the paste to the butter mixture and beat thoroughly until the colour is mixed evenly through the batter. Be sure to scrape down any stray batter from the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. The mix should be a deep rose pink/red.
Step 5. On slow speed, slowly add half the buttermilk until well mixed then add half the flour until well mixed. Repeat for the remaining milk and flour, beating until the mixture is smooth.
Step 6. Add the salt, bicarb and vinegar, turning up the speed and beating for a couple more minutes.
Step 7. Spoon a heaped tablespoon of mixture into each paper cases until no more than two-thirds full.
Step 8. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the top of a cupcake bounces back when lightly touched. (A skewer inserted in the centre should come out clean).
Step 9. Once the cupcakes have cooled slightly in the tray, remove them and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Meanwhile, prepare the cream cheese frosting.
Step 10. In a food processor or electric mixer, beat the icing sugar and butter until well mixed.
Step 11. Dice the cream cheese into smaller cubes then add to the mix, beating until completely combined.
Step 12. On medium-high speed, continue beating the frosting until it becomes light and fluffy. This takes around five minutes.
Step 13. When the cupcakes are cold, pipe the cream cheese frosting on top, or use an icecream scoop to dollop the frosting on the stunning red-domed cupcakes.